Google I/O 2014 Roundup: What to Expect in the Coming Months


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At this year’s Google I/O conference, which took place at the end of June in San Francisco, CA, Google made some major announcements. In fact, there was so much new info, it’s hard to sort through and pick out what’s going to change in the coming months. Instead of trying to parse all the info out there on the ‘net, here’s a short list of what’s new and what to expect from Android in the future..

 Android “L”

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Among all the Android goodies at I/O, Android L might be the most exciting. This is the forthcoming version of Android, which should be available later this year. Google is taking a vastly different approach this year, however, as it has released a Developer Preview for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7, allowing devs to get their apps ready for when the OS rolls out in a full release. To find out more about the L release and the dev preview, head here – there are lots of changes.

 Android Auto

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Android isn’t just for phones any longer, and Google knows it. The OS is so powerful (and voice actions have gotten so good), the company knew it was time to branch out and put Android in more places where it could be useful – like your car’s dashboard. Android Auto puts the mobile OS front and center in your driving experience, complete with voice actions, navigation, audio playback, and a lot more. Expect vehicles with Android Auto to start shipping later this year.

 Android TV

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There is no shortage of set top boxes running Android already, so Google decided to make the experience more TV-friendly. There’s now a TV-specific version of Android available to TV manufacturers and set top box makers, and a development kit was even handed out at I/O to get devs started on building apps for the platform. It will support movies, TV, and games right out of the box, and offers a vastly different interface for simplified browsing on the big screen. For more info, check out Google’s landing page.

 The arrival of Android Wear

 

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Google announced Android Wear, a fork of the Android project specifically for wearables (like smartwatches) a few months ago, and the first devices are now available. The LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live are both available from Google Play, and the long-awaited Moto 360 should be available sometime over the next several weeks. Exciting stuff.

 Lots of other stuff

Honestly, that’s just the tip of the iceberg – but it’s one huge iceberg, after all. There are going to be some major changes to Android by the end of the year, all of which look to improve and advanced the platform in numerous ways. One thing’s for sure: it’s a great and exciting time to be an Android user.

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About the author

Cameron

Cameron

Cameron is a die-hard Android fan and Senior Editor for Android Police. When he's not on the beat covering all the happenings in the Android world, you can usually find him tinkering with (read: breaking) his mobile devices or spending time with his family.

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